Thinking outside the box

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JimGlass
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Thinking outside the box

Post by JimGlass » Sat Feb 18, 2012 4:20 pm

This job was presented to me this past week. It would be a great job for a CNC lathe but since I do not have a CNC lathe I found an alternative technique. The part needs to have the radius machined, machined to length and the end chamfored.

Image

Below is my setup. Everything in the pic is homemade. I have a cylindrical grinding attachment mounted to the table of my homebuilt CNC mill.
Image

Image

The video tells the rest of the story. The endmill itself is used to position (or gage) the part for the next piece. The CNC controller starts the spindle and also starts the cylindrical attachment after the part is milled to length. I'm using the coolant output on the CNC controller to start the cylindrical attachment so the entire process is automated. Not sure how long it will take to load the video. A few seconds on my computer.

Video of the job running

The plan is to build another cylindrical grinding attachment and run the same job on my
CNC Bridgeport. This way I can keep two of our unemployed kids employed for a couple of days. :wink:

More pics of homebuilt mill


Jim
Last edited by JimGlass on Sun Feb 19, 2012 4:17 am, edited 1 time in total.
Tool & Die Maker/Electrician, Retired 2007

So much to learn and so little time.

www.outbackmachineshop.com

Russ Hanscom
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Re: Thinking outside the box

Post by Russ Hanscom » Sat Feb 18, 2012 6:27 pm

Ingenius.

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GlennW
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Re: Thinking outside the box

Post by GlennW » Sat Feb 18, 2012 10:02 pm

That's using the hat rack for sure!

Nicely done!
Glenn

Operating machines is perfectly safe......until you forget how dangerous it really is!

Harold_V
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Re: Thinking outside the box

Post by Harold_V » Sun Feb 19, 2012 2:35 am

NIce setup, Jim.
Curious why you didn't shorten the extension of the work piece, though. Not enough clearance to do so?

Harold
Wise people talk because they have something to say. Fools talk because they have to say something.

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JimGlass
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Re: Thinking outside the box

Post by JimGlass » Sun Feb 19, 2012 4:06 am

NIce setup, Jim.
Curious why you didn't shorten the extension of the work piece, though. Not enough clearance to do so?
Excellent observation Harold. The part you see is not the actual part. The actual part is proprietary. The actual part is a little smaller 1" from the end. The area held in the collet
is larger. However you got me thinking again. I'm going to check something.

Harold, sure glade you taught me how to post links. Ya know, the {URL=link } text {/url}
Always wondered how to that and now I know.

Thanks,
Jim
Tool & Die Maker/Electrician, Retired 2007

So much to learn and so little time.

www.outbackmachineshop.com

RSG
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Re: Thinking outside the box

Post by RSG » Sun Feb 19, 2012 9:23 am

Really cool Jim. I'd love to explore homebuilt CNC down the road.
Vision is not seeing things as they are, but as they will be.

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JimGlass
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Re: Thinking outside the box

Post by JimGlass » Sun Feb 19, 2012 10:57 am

I'd love to explore homebuilt CNC down the road.
I got involved in CNC in my early fiftys. At that time I finally had capability to build machines from home and because of the internet I had easy access to knowledge. Built my first 3-axis CNC mill in 2001. Learned a few things about making a machine rigid on that project. Later I realized the same technology in the first CNC mill could be applied to a full sized machine. So I bought an old Bridgeport Series I CNC mill with a Boss 5 control that did not work for $1500. A week later I had the Bridgeport running by CNC controlled from my laptop computer. Then I had a machine that was rigid and with a 2hp spindle could do some serious work. That was back in 2006. The machine has paid for itself many times over and over.

In 2009 I built the CNC mill shown in the video after someone gave me enough castiron dovetailed bars to build the machine. I wanted a small rigid machine for working on real small parts. The small CNC mill gets used more than the Bridgeport. Sometimes I run them both at the same time.

CNC is a wonderful tool. I wish I would have learned it 30 years ago.The project I posted is a typical example of how CNC enhances our creativity. Little circles, arcs and angles can be made as easily as straight lines. However, learning how to effectively apply CNC comes from manual machining. The hair on the back of my neck stands up everytime I hear some idiot saying "get CNC, manual machining is dead". :x The fact is, my manual JET mill gets used much more than my CNC machines. For making special parts, jigs, fixtures the manual mill cannot be beat. Many of these jigs and fixtures are later used on the CNC machines. There is a perfect fit for both manual and CNC machine work. However, we need to recognize that perfect fit.

I love this stuff. If I can do it for another 30 years that will be fine with me. :wink:

Jim
Tool & Die Maker/Electrician, Retired 2007

So much to learn and so little time.

www.outbackmachineshop.com

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